Links for 7-17-2018

  • Byron York explains why Donald Trump doesn’t like to admit Russian interference in the 2016 election:

    There have always been two parts to the Trump-Russia probe: the what-Russia-did part, which is the investigation into Russia’s actions during the campaign, and the get-Trump part, which is the effort to use the investigation to remove him from office.

    Trump’s problem is that he has always refused, or been unable, to separate the two. One is about national security and international relations, while the other is about Donald Trump.

    The president clearly believes if he gives an inch on the what-Russia-did part — if he concedes that Russia made an effort to disrupt the election — his adversaries, who want to discredit his election, undermine him, and force him from office, will take a mile on the get-Trump part. That’s consistent with how Trump approaches other problems; he doesn’t admit anything, because he knows his adversaries will never be satisfied and just demand more.

    Donald Trump now says he misspoke when he said he believed Vladimir Putin’s denial of Russian interference in the election over the conclusions of American intelligence agencies.

  • Paul Kengor notes that Democrats are now Russia hawks:

    It’s only a matter of time before Hillary Clinton heads to Wheeling waving a list of 205 Russian spies in the Trump State Department.

    Where’s old Tailgunner Joe Biden to charge Trump with “a conspiracy so immense”?

    This hypocrisy is outrageous. It’s outrageous that it took charges of Russian meddling against Hillary Clinton to finally make progressives give a damn about the dangerous deceit of the Kremlin.

  • New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, and Maryland sued the federal government over the $10,000 cap on deductions for state and local taxes included in the latest tax overhaul. These four states want the residents of other states to resume subsidizing their extremely high tax rates.

  • The Daily Caller identified the founder of Sleeping Giants, a left-wing activist group that works to shut down right-wing outlets via boycott campaigns: Matt Rivitz, an ad copywriter based in San Francisco.

  • Federal prosecutors charged another Honduran congressman with drug trafficking. The congressman, Midence Oqueli Martinez Turcioss, is not in custody.

  • Iran filed a lawsuit against the U.S. in the International Court of Justice, claiming the latest American sanctions violate a 1955 treaty.

  • John O’Sullivan wrote a good summary of British Prime Minister Theresa May’s “soft Brexit” plan and its aftermath:

    The commitments had been to an entirely new Brexit strategy that seemed to erase all of May’s famous red lines against what she would not accept in talks with Brussels. It was the kind of thing that gives shyster lawyers a bad name: Britain would leave the EU Customs Union but then join a common customs territory with the EU; leave the single market but accept “ongoing harmonization” with EU regulations; leave the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice but then instruct U.K. courts to follow ECJ precedents. May insisted that these proposals were the fulfillment of her public pledges. That was too much for anyone who believes that 2+2=4. David Davis resigned on Sunday evening; his junior minister, Steve Baker, did so the next morning; Boris followed that afternoon; and the resignations — of junior ministers, parliamentary political secretaries (the first step on the political ladder), party officials, constituency chairmen, and ordinary activists — have been flowing ever since.

  • Nicaraguan security forces moved against an opposition stronghold in Masaya. At least 275 people have been killed since protests started in April.

  • Afghan commandos raided a Taliban prison in Helmand province and freed 58 prisoners.